Saturday, May 22, 2010


As I mentioned before, our new fertility clinic had a picnic today for its patients. LJ was so excited to go, and we were hopeful that perhaps we'd get lucky and win 1 of 2 prizes; the first being a $5,000 credit toward an IVF cycle, and the second being $1,000 off.

When we got there, we were surprised by the sheer size of it. So many people had RSVP'd that they provided shuttles to get to the park and had police directing traffic. When we got there we were promptly greeted by a family from my neighborhood. It was so strange seeing them there, and it made me slightly uncomfortable. I'm not really sure why, but I guess it goes along with me trying to keep my IF life away from the generalness of my everyday life. We aren't close to this family, but of course we recognized them and stopped to exchange niceties. Once we made it up to the many pavilions set up, it began to set in: All these people are in the midst of this horrible struggle that is TTC. It was a very sobering experience. While on the shuttle, I recognized one of the nurses from the clinic who told me that over ONE THOUSAND people had RSVP'd. So many people! It helped me see just how many people this affects, and it made my heart hurt. It was so humbling to me.

LJ had a blast. They gave her a teddy bear when we got there, and then ushered her to the bounce houses and play area. They provided lunch and desert for everyone as well as endless popcorn and cotton candy (DH was in paradise. Can you say "Candy junkie?") As I sat and watched LJ play, I began to notice how many kids were there. Not quite as many as I would have expected. What bothered me was how few pregnant women I saw. For once in my life I was hoping to be surrounded by them. I wanted it to be a type of reassurance something like:"if all these women can get pregnant with this clinic, so can I" Unfortunately, that was not the case. Nevertheless, we had a great time and I don't regret going. We will find out who the winners of the drawings are on Monday.

Wish us luck!

Tuesday, May 18, 2010


Well, now you know. Cycle 84- Epic FAIL as well as a total mind suck.

I have been thinking a lot lately. Have you ever had an experience that you know is real, but somehow it seems detached from your consciousness? Like you are going through the motions but for the most part you feel emotionless about what is happening? Or, if you are like me, you have one emotion: anxiety. That is what TTC is like for me.

We have officially passed the 7 year mark of TTC #2. 21 rounds of clomid, 2 years of glucophage/avandia, countless PIO shots, 9 IUI's, and now a Femara/ Gonal-F cycle to boot. What have we gained? 3 angel babies, a lot of tears, and many strained relationships. But here's the thing: I can't stop. Even when I think there is no way I will ever end up with a take-home baby, or that I can possibly go through ONE. MORE. CYCLE. I know that I can't stop. TTC has become an addiction. It has become part of the definition of Meim. It's probably more than that. I can't fathom giving up after all we've done. It's like dropping out of school when you are only a few credits shy of a diploma. I can't let it all be for nothing.

A few of you have asked if we can or will move on to IVF. The only answer I have right now is "maybe." Right now, as silly as it sounds, I don't feel there is a good reason to do it. Currently, our IUI success rate is at just over 40%. (I am not counting the first 2 IUI's done with my OB, He later admitted to a lot of "guessing") I am not really convinced that IVF will give us any greater odds. Our most recent TTC obstacle is staying pregnant, something I'm not sure IVF has any power to fix. I know that we will not continue IUI forever. Right now, we are trying to live in the moment of what is happening and not think too far into the future. I am lucky to say that I have a bit of time on my side. I am only 28, and my FSH is good. We are taking it 1 cycle at a time for now. This upcoming Saturday, our new clinic is having a picnic for it's patients. They will be doing 2 drawings for discounted IVF cycles. One will be half off, the other will be $1,000 off. Who knows? Maybe we'll get lucky.

Today I was reading another TTC blog and read down her list of things they have done so far- a detailed recap of their journey. I thought of perhaps adding something like that to my blog, but when I started to type, I couldn't remember. I know the stats, the meds I've taken, and the IUI count, but I can't remember the details. I don't remember what month we did our first IUI. I can't decide when I started the glucophage, or had my first hsg. Infertility has become a giant blur to me. The cycles have all rolled together. I guess it doesnt' really matter anyway. At the end of it all, we still don't have the addition that we have tried so desperately for.

Today is CD 1. Another chance for a miracle. Speaking of which, I have a new niece today and I haven't even cried. How's that for a miracle?

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Cycle 84

Forgive me for not giving details sooner, but talking about it made it so much more real and for me.. scary. I had to get through this in private. This step was a HUGE deal for me, and I have been beyond scared. Thanks for understanding.

When AF finally arrived (the day my nephew was born... nice, huh?) we decided to move on. To do this we had to change doctors. I was completely not okay with that since I absolutely LOVE my RE, but his office does not take insurance and we simply couldn't afford to move on without our coverage.

Here's how things went:

4/19 CD3: Meet with Dr. H. He pressures me to move straight to IVF to minimize the risk of another ectopic. When I refuse, and tell him of my reasons he agrees to move forward with my RR's suggestion of moving on to FSH injections with IUI. (To clarify, Dr. H is a well respected RE. I just don't feel as comfortable with him as I do with Dr. P, who will be referred to as my REAL RE [RR]) I secretly decide to cycle with Dr. H for insurance reasons, but (if I get that far) to continue my care with my RR, who accepts my insurance during early pregnancy.

At this visit, I have 7 antral follicles on my right side, but my left ovary is not visible on u/s. Here is our plan:

CD3-7: 5mg Femara
This makes me sicker than I thought possible. Migraines every morning, and
extreme nausea. I lose 8 lbs. in 4 days. Tell DH that if this doesn't work, I'm not doing
it again. I can't handle the side effects. I'd GLADLY take Clomid over Femara.

CD7: 112 U Gonal-F
This wasn't nearly as scary as I thought it would be. It is a freakin' cake-walk after
doing PIO injects.

CD9: 112 U Gonal-F
Start to feel a little bit "heavy" on my right side. Proactively start drinking ungodly
amounts of sports drinks and water, just in case. I'm still getting lovely headaches, but
the nausea is pretty much gone, but I still haven't found my appetite.

CD11: 112 U Gonal-F
This one hurts. And that nausea... apparently it went on a mini-vacation, but it's back. Oh, joy. I get a terrible sense that this isn't going to end well. I'm going to have to cancel this cycle, I just
know it.

CD12: Follicle check to determine trigger
2 large Follies (Internal happy-dance commences.) R- 17.73 mm L- 18 mm. He doesn't mention other follies, but I can see them on the U/S, but they are MUCH smaller than the 2 main ones. Lining 14. Dr. H says everything looks great, my lining is "
very good," and explains that anything over 8 is good enough for implantation. Although I'm starting to see darker lines on my OPKs, he tells me to trigger sub-Q tonight. IUI scheduled for CD 14. OMG... this is happening!

CD13: Go about my day as usual, trying not to give anything away by grimmacing anytime anything touches my stomach. Trigger left a nice bruise, and makes me feel like I got punched in the tummy.

CD14: DH's sample has improved considerably from our last IUI. 66 million, 89% motility, 18 million total motile count post wash. (Guess the FertilAid helped!) IUI goes perfectly. No pain, no cramping, nothing. By 3:00 pm I am miserable. My abdomen swells, and I can't walk without being very uncomfortable. I start having some really "fun" digestive issues, and decide to call it a day. I spend the rest of the day in bed.

CD15: I have gained 4 lbs since yesterday, and am still all puffy and sore. Dr. tells DH that what I am feeling is comparable "to knocking around really swollen testicles." The look on his face was priceless. Dr. tells me to take Tylenol and drink plenty of fluids. He also says that this "could be a good sign."

CD17: Feeling much better. Almost back to normal. Theorize that the gross feeling I had was just the effects of ovulating.

CD19: Decide that this will be the LONGEST 2WW ever!

CD20: POAS just to see a companion pink line. The line is pretty faint, guess trigger is almost gone.

CD23, 9DPO: POAS... to make sure the trigger is gone. Yeah, that's why. See a faint line (okay, so what if it was
10 hours after I peed on it? And who cares that DH could only see the line after I used photoshop to inverse the picture? It counts, right? Okay, fine. I didn't think so, either!)

CD 24, 10 DPO: POAS again. It's a sickness, I tell ya! BFN. What a shocker. Feeling a little discouraged. (See, this is why I shouldn't do this!)

CD 25, 11 DPO: POAdamnS! Anyone know of any 12-step programs for this affliction? I need help! BFN again (later an evap line appears.) I spend 1/2 hour typing "am I pregnant" into any and all online magic 8 ball's I find. The verdict? 8- "maybe," 2- "ask again later," and 1- "my sources say no." Then I find the "real" magic 8 ball. 16 that said "count on it." Don't believe me? Here's the link Let's just forget about the "without a doubt" answer I got when I asked it, "are you lying?"

CD26, 12DPO: 2 days in a row of evap lines. I'm feeling quite discouraged. Why do I do this to myself? Pretty sure this cycle is a bust.

CD27, 13DPO: Still BFN. I doubt I'll do a beta at all. I decide to quit the PIO in the morning. We'll see what happens. I have my nurse order more Gonal-F. Looks like we're on to cycle 85 soon.

CD29, 15DPO: Nurse leaves message telling me that Dr. H would like me to do the beta regardless of my hpt results. We need to rule out low numbers.

CD30, 16DPO: Beta: 3.64 Cycle 84 is officially a failure.

And the journey continues...

Friday, May 7, 2010

May I gush about my daughter for a second? Thanks!

I know I have mentioned before that my LJ is a kind, witty, caring, and a completely one-of-a-kind girl... but have I mentioned how smart she is? 'Cuz she is, ya know. And now I have more evidence than a biased parent's own astute observation.

Back in February, LJ tested for our district's full-time gifted and talented program, Spectrum. We were hopeful that she would get in, but knew the chances weren't great. There were 129 kids testing, and only 27 available spots. Now, if LJ had been competing against regular 'ole 2nd graders, we wouldn't have worried much, but that was not the case. She was testing along with the other students that scored within the top 10% of the end-of-level tests last year, as well as students referred to the program because "normal" curriculum wasn't challenging enough. Basically, she was testing with the other super-smarty-pants kids from the entire district.

Walking into that room with all the other parents and students was very intimidating. LJ didn't seem to notice. She completed her test early (not always a good sign) and we went home with a promise that we would hear about placement in April. Well, April came and went and we didn't hear anything. DH's aunt just happens to be the principal at the Spectrum school, so we even tried to get answers out of her, but with no luck. Even she didn't know yet who had made the cut (she doesn't have a say.)

Yesterday, at the tail end of LJ's Mother's Day program, DH called me. I couldn't hear him well because of all of the commotion in the classroom. I hung up, and he texted me instead. "Should I open the Spectrum packet?" I told LJ that it had arrived, and her teacher gave us special permission to leave early to go open the packet. Her teacher was just as excited as we were!

On the way home, LJ asked if I would read it first and then tell her what the letter said. I could tell she was about to combust with excitement. When I got home, DH was standing at the front door, dangling the envelope in front of us. I tore through the paper, and read the first line. I calmly handed LJ the letter, and waited while she read:

Dear Parent(s)/Guardian,
Congratulations! We are pleased to offer your child placement in the _________
__________ School District Full-Time Spectrum Gifted/Talented Program at
________ Elementary, 3rd grade for the 2010-2011 school year...

Her face was priceless. Here eyes got huge and her jaw dropped. She threw both arms in the air and started the BEST happy dance I had ever seen while yelling a string of "YESSSSS!"s and "WOO-HOO!"s Okay, in all fairness all three of us were dancing up a storm. It was pretty exciting.

Once we had calmed down a bit, I started reading the rest of the paperwork. Her test scores were included with the acceptance letter. In the summary it stated, "Your child performed better than 97 percent of children testing nationally." ** Also, her math and language criterion-referenced tests were both at 100%.

My LJ is amazing. We are so proud of her! And what's even better is that she is proud of herself! She set a goal, and attained it. I couldn't be more happy for her. This will be a great opportunity for her. Spectrum is geared for kids who learn quickly and can adapt to a more complex workload. She will have the opportunity to participate in a drama program, learn a foreign language, as well as go on more field trips. Overall, it is a program filled with opportunity. We are so grateful that she has been given this chance.

The future is a bright, bright thing.

**LJ was tested with the Naglieri Nonverbal Ability Test, as well as the Stanford Diagnostic Reading Test. Google will be happy to explain these tests. I'm still trying to figure it all out! =)

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Simply Facsinating!

Just a quick post to say I'm not dead, our family is not at war, and things are just slowly moving along.

I've been keeping busy making baby blankets, hooded towels and headbands for many friends and family members that I adore. Funny, this task totally sucked a few weeks ago, but now that I get to do them on my time with no baby shower deadlines, I'm finding them much easier to complete. Besides- I truly do love giving them. And I look at it as being able to practice for when I finally get to make them for our baby, right? Who knows, maybe by then I will be able to do them with my eyes closed! If not, I'll at least be able to whip them out quickly for friends.

Also, I've been reading the Percy Jackson and the Olympians series. LJ asked if I would buy The Lightening Thief for her. I love that she craves new material to read, but I get nervous if it is a book I am unfamiliar with. If that is the case, I will read it first. I'm reading the 4th book now, and I think they are good. Good, not great. I have decided that they are a bit mature for my little second-grade LJ. Perhaps next year she will be ready for them. It's hard to say "no" when her requests have to do with reading, but sometimes content can be surprising.

Has anyone else read them? If so, did any of you notice the similarities between these books and Harry Potter? Just curious. Maybe I think too much. LOL

Anyway, that's my sad attempt at an update. Hopefully I'll think of something interesting to divulge later.